21 October 2014

2014 NFL Predictions: Week 8

Week 8 sure saw some wild finishes. The Jaguars got their first win of the season by rolling the Browns, the Rams executed some glorious special teams trickery to defeat the Seahawks, the Chiefs upset the Chargers on the road, the Bills scored a winning touchdown in the last seconds against the Vikings, the Patriots blocked a game-winning field goal attempt by the Jets, Colt McCoy made an appearance and won a game for Washington, and the Lions scored two touchdowns late to beat the Saints. Good stuff all around, but can this week top it? Here are my picks.

Last Week: 10-5
2014: 61-44
Locks: 5-2

Thursday, October 23rd
San Diego Chargers (5-2) vs. Denver Broncos (5-1) - CBS/NFL Network, 8:25
The last Thursday night game on CBS should be a doozy as these may very well be the finest teams in the AFC. Two of the game's top quarterbacks will go at it but while the Chargers have been very good defending the pass, they are going to have to run the ball if they want to take out Peyton Manning, who only just set the all-time touchdown record. I like the Broncos but not by much.
Broncos 38 Chargers 35

Sunday, October 26th
Detroit Lions (5-2) vs. Atlanta Falcons (2-5) - Fox, 9:30 am
Sunday morning football, you gotta love it. Save for the opener at New Orleans and the demolition of the Buccaneers two weeks later, the Falcons have looked very mediocre this season. The defense has been terrible, the running game has been nonexistent, leaving all the pressure on Matt Ryan. That will be a problem against a defense that has been as strong as Detroit's.
Lions 24 Falcons 12

Minnesota Vikings (2-5) vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (1-5) - Fox, 1:00
Given how bad the NFC South has looked this year, even a team as dreadful as the Buccaneers can still be alive in the divisional race. It sounds ridiculous, but they are only two games back of Carolina in first. Tampa Bay is coming off a much-needed bye after their destruction at the hands of the Ravens. Meanwhile, the Vikings are coming off another disappointing loss, this team in the last seconds to Buffalo. I think Teddy Bridgewater can find some success against a pitiful Buc pass defense and get the win.
Vikings 20 Buccaneers 17

Miami Dolphins (3-3) vs. Jacksonville Jaguars (1-6) - CBS, 1:00
The Dolphins have been playing good football of late and they most recently just went into Soldier Field and all but embarrassed the Bears. Ryan Tannehill has been looking good at quarterback and the defense has been playing really well. They'll head up I-95 to take on a Jaguars club brimming with newfound confidence after putting together an impressive win over Cleveland. That said, Jacksonville is not going to have the same success running the ball this week that they did last week, and Miami will get the W.
Dolphins 20 Jaguars 10

Houston Texans (3-4) vs. Tennessee Titans (2-5) - Fox, 1:00
The Texans lost their third in a row in style on Monday, allowing 24 points unanswered in a three minute span at the end of the first half. Tennessee, meanwhile, forced Kirk Cousins from the game and still lost to Washington. Houston isn't all that good but Tennessee is indeed worse and even at home, I think the Titans will fall, even if Jake Locker returns at quarterback.
Texans 18 Titans 13

Buffalo Bills (4-3) vs. New York Jets (1-6) - CBS, 1:00
I don't get to say this very often about any team this far into the season but I have gotten the Jets' result correctly every week this season thus far. Now that I've said that, I'm certain to be wrong this week. They had a disappointing loss on this past Thursday in Foxborough after they played relatively well, and they also acquired the embattled Percy Harvin in a very surprising move on Friday. They get a Buffalo club that has looked better with Kyle Orton under center but I think the Jets get their second win at home.
Jets 19 Bills 15

Chicago Bears (3-4) vs. New England Patriots (5-2) - Fox, 1:00
Following yet another disappointing loss, this time to Miami, the Bears' locker room was a mess, and not the good kind. Save for the win over a mediocre Atlanta squad, Chicago has looked mediocre since defeating the Jets a month ago. And it won't get any better as they head to New England to take on the Patriots that is finding ways to win again.
Patriots 27 Bears 16

Seattle Seahawks (3-3) vs. Carolina Panthers (3-3-1) - CBS, 1:00
What an odd game here. The Seahawks have now lost two in a row to Dallas and St. Louis, respectively, while the Panthers are coming off a destruction in Green Bay in which the Packers knocked them out early. Seattle is better than they have shown and while this is an early start out East for a team that is far less imposing on the road, I think they'll get off the schneid.
Seahawks 23 Panthers 21

St. Louis Rams (2-4) vs. Kansas City Chiefs (3-3) - Fox, 1:00
Had the Cardinals defeated the Giants in the NLCS, this would've been the biggest day in Missouri history. But alas, this has turned into a solid game with both teams pulling off upsets this past week with the Rams defeating the Seahawks and KC upsetting San Diego. Of these two teams, Kansas City is the better club but the Rams with Austin Davis have shown a propensity to make things interesting.
Chiefs 30 Rams 26

Baltimore Ravens (5-2) vs. Cincinnati Bengals (3-2-1) - CBS, 1:00
It seems to me that a very good team that has gone a little bit under the radar is the Baltimore Ravens. They have looked pretty impressive offensively with Joe Flacco looking very good (although not quite elite) and the backfield getting it down as well. Meanwhile, Cincinnati is having a three-game winless streak in which they have got smoked by New England, tied Carolina and got shut out by the Colts. The Bengals were looking like the best team in the NFL at one point but now they're about to extend their winless streak.
Ravens 26 Bengals 20

Philadelphia Eagles (5-1) vs. Arizona Cardinals (5-1) - Fox, 4:05
This may just be the best game of the day. Philadelphia had been looking very good prior to their bye week while the Cardinals had two good, but not great, performances in a row against a pair of dreadful franchises after losing in Denver. The Eagles have not been as good running the football this season as they did a year ago and a stout Arizona run defense will continue that trend, but Nick Foles should be able to throw the ball on this mediocre pass defense. I do like both teams but I think Philly will get the win.
Eagles 31 Cardinals 30

Oakland Raiders (0-6) vs. Cleveland Browns (3-3) - CBS, 4:25
I picked the Browns as my lock of the week and after the turd they laid in Jacksonville in which the winless Jaguars scored 24 unanswered points in a win, I'm probably not doing that again. Brian Hoyer looked terrible, they couldn't run the ball while Denard Robinson ran all over their defense. They face a second straight winless club and while I think they will win this time, I'm not that confident in it.
Browns 23 Raiders 20

Indianapolis Colts (5-2) vs. Pittsburgh Steelers (4-3) - CBS, 4:25
Given their uninspiring losses to clubs such as Tampa Bay and Cleveland, and their uninspiring wins over teams like Cleveland and Jacksonville, the Steelers have looked far from impressive this season. And yet here they sit, sitting a game out of first place. Indianapolis has won five games in a row after dropping their first two, looking stronger each week. Pittsburgh should give them a game but I'm feeling this Colts team right now.
Colts 35 Steelers 28

Green Bay Packers (5-2) vs. New Orleans Saints (2-4) - NBC, 8:30
The way the Saints choked the game away in Detroit on Sunday was pretty inexcusable and they are lucky that the NFC South has been a joke. They really need to get a win as their only wins have come against feeble competition and they really haven't looked all that strong this season. Green Bay comes to town having won four in a row and looking like the far superior team but for some reason in my gut, I'm feeling New Orleans.
Saints 35 Packers 32

Monday, October 27
Washington (2-5) vs. Dallas Cowboys (6-1) - ESPN, 8:30
Dallas uncorked yet another impressive win, their sixth in a row, with the latest coming against the Giants. DeMarco Murray has been sensation for the Cowboys this year while Tony Romo has been very efficient. They host Washington who will start Colt McCoy after Kirk Cousins, who some thought could have been worth a first-round pick, was ineffective yet again. McCoy looked fine against Tennessee, but he faces a different animal this week. Dallas is my Lock of the Week.
Cowboys 27 Washington 14


  1. Hey Ben.
    How do you get away with using the NFL licensed logos? I see the link at the bottom of the page to SportsLogo's.net, but the copyright still belongs with the NFL right? What's the deal?

    1. Wow, I can think of about one million other things to care about.

    2. We would have an issue if I was using the logos to sell merchandise or for any commercial purpose. Obviously that is not what is going on here.

  2. Cowboys 49 Washington 3
    Saints 14 Packers 35
    Colts 35 Steelers 36
    Browns 13 Raiders 12
    Eagles 29 Cardinals 35
    Ravens 55 Bengals 10
    Chiefs 17 Rams 16
    Seahawks 29 Panthers 21
    Patriots 0 Bears 63
    Jets 6 Bills 21
    Texans 21 Titans 0
    Dolphins 20 Jaguars 27
    Vikings 29 Buccaneers 29
    Lions 40 Falcons 36